About 10 years ago I took a leap of faith and restarted my life moving from the Beautiful Byron Bay in the Northern Rivers of New South Wales Australia, up the coast to the stunning Beaches of Noosa in the Sunshine Coast. I found in a fantastic little spot overlooking the river at Gympie Terrace and during this time of renew, I made a decision to write ever single day.
I'd make myself a cup of coffee each morning and I'd open up my A4 Black and Red hardback book and after pitching the date in the top right hand corner of my page I would release. Now for a 30 year old who had just moved to a new town, you wouldn't think I would have too much to write about however I was brimming.
I would list all the things I was grateful for in my life as well as write about what I wanted to create in my life be it things, experiences and people. I would create how I wanted my life to be on paper and I would consistently give thanks for all that I had.
I had recently discovered how to write positive affirmations so I would create them to help me feel better if I was feeling low and many times I would attempt to manifest the Australian Visa I had applied for at this time. I would write what could be considered spells, to release me from my failed marriage and I would also write hilarious and encouraging letters to friends.
When I look back now I realise I was writing to heal and to create, I was releasing all the elements in my life that either needed to be gone or I was developing new experiences onto paper. It was massively healing and freeing and I felt like I was carrying less and less on my shoulders the more words I wrote.
I love writing and I am not just talking about creating content, but the actual physical act of writing. I like a clean, curl and crease free page of paper usually on the right hand side of a preferably new book ready for ink. I absolutely love a smooth pen that glides across the paper, you know the type, the one you borrow and it writes so perfectly that you actually consider keeping it! It doesn't have to be a fancy pen with a fancy price tag either, in fact I have fallen for those old ones with an attractive click everytime the ball point lifts off the page.
Writing works for me, so I write my to do lists, I write my plans, I write when I am stressed and I need to heal and I write when I am creative and I want to share. It's pretty apt that I have ended up creating tools for us creatives that encourages you to step away from the computer and smartphone to slow down and write it down.
Writing is good for relaxing as it is quite meditative, your brain will focus more on the words so you can easily transfer all you are holding on to in that moment with the power of the pen. Most importantly, it reduces stress and overwhelm by simply slowing down. You simply do not need to remember everything. Write it down, if it is a to do list item, a process, or how you feel - release it to a page and watch your shoulders relax, your head will calm and you will be breathing easier.
Here's a few other examples of how you can bring writing into your business world and reduce the overwhelm.
1. Write about your 'Why'
Write a story about why you started doing what you do and why you are motivated to run your business. This is a fantastic opportunity to describe how you feel about your craft, to share what drives you to do what you do. You could use this as a point of reference on a tough day, you could share this with your customers so they can get to know and trust you more.
2. Write a Morning Process
Write down 3-5 tasks that you must do each and every morning to become your morning process. These are non negotiable items that must be completed that will help your working day. Set the foundation of each day with these tasks to set you up for success, then have that yummy satisfaction of crossing them off your list as you complete them.
3. The art of gratitude
Writing about what you are grateful for will really change your emotional set point. Make time in your day to write down all the things in your business that you are really happy to have. At first it may be a little difficult and feel a little odd being thankful for some of the most obvious things, but keep at it, soon you will start flowing with thanks for a multitude of elements and it will bring with it a naturally good feeling. (This activity works wonders when changing the subject matter from 'Your Business' to 'Your Life').
4. Creative nonsense
Bend your brain a little. Feel stuck in a rut, doing the same processes over and over again? Well get creative with some writing and make a new pathway in your brain to something amazing. Think about the nonsence in the story line of Alice in Wonderland, a talking Cheshire Cat? A Mad Hatter? Fantastic nonsense, give it a crack and see where it goes.
5. Write a task list
Starting, developing and running a small creative business has it's moments. There will be days when you just don't know where to start because there are so many things to do, they may need to be done in the right order, you can't do this because you haven't got that and before you know it you have lost 5 hours in social media ahhhh.
Start developing and writing down a task list with a process on what to do within that task. The best way to do this is to imagine you are handing your business over to someone else to run, so they will need to understand what to do and when. Eventually once you have your tasks and processes created, you can then create your weekly business routine...
6. Weekly business routine
Take some or all of your business tasks and place them in a weekly roster to prompt you to accomplish what you need to do and when. Need to order more findings? Check your stock on Friday before driving to the wholesalers on Saturday. Do you prefer to create all your social media in one hit and upload it into a scheduler? Write down the best day for this to happen so come next week you social media feed updates are flying out the door.
If you have any area's of your business where you specifically choose to write over type, share them here. Or if you attempt any of the above for the first time, let me know how you go.